The Cooldown: Week 7

Cover Photo courtesy of The Houston Chronicle

Dan Crenshaw tossed the coin at Atascocita and Summer Creek, a game that unexpectedly went into overtime. We keep barreling toward a Jersey Village-versus-Stratford district title game. Klein Collins pulled off a shocker. Week seven was wild! All that and more is below, here’s the full recap and highlights.

Clear Falls takes down Clear Springs for the first time ever

The old saying that “the third time is the charm!” worked great for Clear Falls on Friday, if by third time you really mean tenth time.

It might have taken Clear Falls 10 tries to beat Clear Springs, but the Knights will take it. Until the end of the third, this was a back-and-forth affair. Clear Springs jumped out to an early lead after Cody Kuhlmann touchdown strikes to Ky Woods and Noah Thomas. The duo of Kuhlmann and Thomas kept Clear Springs in the game in fourth by connecting on a touchdown pass to cut the Clear Falls lead to six, but it wasn’t enough to overcome an outstanding Knights rushing attack.

Payton Greer had one touchdown run, Cam Roberson had two, and David Smith racked up 205 yards and two scores on 28 carries. If the run game wasn’t enough, Luke Vidal returned a kickoff for a touchdown and caught a 61-yard touchdown pass from Landon Vessel. The Clear Springs offense was good, but this will be a game remembered by the Clear Falls offense being outstanding.

The lone blemish for Clear Falls (6-1, 2-1) was Dickinson back in week five. The Knights will be big favorites in their remaining district games and should enter as the top seed for 24-6A in the 6A-II playoffs. Next up for them is Clear Lake.

Clear Springs (3-3, 1-1) is a solid third-place team in this district. The Chargers challenged themselves with non-district loss to Katy and Katy Tompkins and should set them up well for the playoffs. Next up for them is at Clear Creek.

Cy Woods gets a leg-up for the final playoff spot in 16-6A

Cy Park, Cy Ranch and Bridgeland currently comprise the top three teams in 16-6A. They’re all but locked into playoff spots. That meant last weeks’ winner of Cy Woods and Langham Creek would have an inside track for the final playoff spot.

The Cy Woods defense was the story of the night. The Wildcats held a typically high-powered Langham Creek offense to just 16 points and forced five total turnovers (!!!) including two in the last five minutes of the game to preserve a 17-16 win.

That defense allowed for a smaller offensive output to win the game. Wildcat quarterback Trey Craft finished with 114 yards, no touchdowns and one INT on 10-of-15 passing, while also running 18 times for 96 yards and both Cy Woods touchdowns. It was a by-committee rushing attack with Connor Morris carrying 15 times for 53 yards and JaVarian Stewart carrying four times for 70 yards. Stewart was also the leading receiver, catching five balls for 54 yards.

On defense, Josh Jones, Will Price and Dylan Rogers all picked off LC quarterback Tanner Murray. The Lobos turnover struggles weren’t limited to the passing game either. Price, Juan Rojas and Matthew Rodriguez all forced fumbles; Langham Creek recovered one of those while Cy Woods defensive lineman Grant Ladner recovered the other two to total five turnovers for the Wildcats defense.

Langham Creek (2-4, 1-2) has lost games by six points, three points, and now one point, and will need to pull off some upsets to get back in the playoff picture. Next up for the Lobos is at Cy Lakes. With Cy Ranch and Cy Park left on the schedule, the Lobos will likely need to win at least one of those games to get in.

Cy Woods (3-3, 2-1) also has Cy Ranch and Cy Park left on the schedule. The Wildcats look to follow up their big win at Cy Ranch this week.

Klein Collins takes down last 15-6A unbeaten

It’s tough to be the last unbeaten team in your district and have a target on your back every week. Just ask Tomball.

The Cougars entered their game with Klein Collins at 6-0 and did not see the record improve. It was an uncharacteristically bad night for what has been a great offense this season in a 31-8 loss. The Cougars spent most of the night trying to play catch-up, so Evan Alaniz carried just four times times for four yards, and Chance Womack just five times for 47 yards. Quarterback Cale Hellums was the leading rusher with 56 yards and the lone touchdown on 14 carries.

Hellums also finished with 87 yards and an INT through the air on 14-of-29 passing against a stout Klein Collins defense – Asa Brown came up with the lone turnover for KC on the Hellums INT.

On offense, Tucker Parks had an efficient night with 90 yards on 8-of-9 passing. Jeremiah Hackney-Hasan carried 15 times for 45 yards and two scores and Ethan Bridges led the group with one carry for 56 yards and a score. As a team, Collins rushed 40 times 226 yards and four scores, with Donovan Baker accounting for the other touchdown on his lone 33-yard carry.

Tomball (6-1, 2-1) will look to bounce back against Klein Oak at home this week. The only scenario in which Tomball would miss the playoffs is if the Cougars lose to both Klein Oak and Klein, the latter of which is the district finale. Klein Forest and Tomball Memorial have all but been eliminated at 0-3 each. With Klein Cain and Klein Collins both undefeated in district play, it will likely be a three-way race for the final two spots.

Klein Collins (2-4, 2-0) is seeing the benefits of playing a tough non-district schedule pay off. Next up for the Tigers is 6-1 Klein Cain. The Hurricanes are averaging an even 50 points-per-game, so the Collins defense will have to bring it against the district favorites.

News and Notes

In this section each week, I’ll do some bullet points to highlight the other games that caught my eye but didn’t have time to discuss in detail like the games mentioned above.

  • George Ranch used a big fourth quarter to beat Austin, 35-21
  • Clements survived and Elkins rally for a 27-25 win
  • Tompkins got back on track with a 52-7 romping of Katy Taylor
  • The Woodlands had no problem putting away an otherwise impressive Willis squad, 43-10
  • Madison picked up a big 26-21 win against Waltrip
  • Dawson put away Alief Taylor, 40-23
  • Shadow Creek outlasted a Strake Jesuit rally for a 35-20 win
  • Deer Park survived a shootout with Channelview, 49-42
  • Conroe also survived a shootout with Oak Ridge, 44-41
  • Jersey Village picked up a 39-30 come-from-behind win against Cy-Fair
  • Cy Springs used a big second half to take down Cy Lakes, 41-20
  • Atascocita survived Summer Creek, 30-24 in overtime
  • Seven Lakes survived a scare from Morton Ranch, 21-18
  • Klein hung on for a 35-28 win against Tomball Memorial that is important for Klein’s playoff hopes
  • College Park used a big fourth quarter to take down Grand Oaks, 35-21
  • Baytown Lee shutout GCM, 35-0
  • Hightower kept it rolling with a 34-7 win over Foster
  • Richard Reese set Bellville’s all-time scoring record in a 72-0 win against Wharton

Player of the Week

My player-of-the-week hails from a team that is still undefeated but nobody saw coming. Jersey Village is 6-0 for the first time since the 1990’s behind the stellar play of sophomore quarterback Adam Tran.

Tran completed 18 of his 31 pass attempts for 264 yards and two scores against no interceptions in a huge come-from-behind 39-30 win against Cy-Fair last week. That’s 14.7 yards-per-completion! To get such great play from a sophomore quarterback is rare and Tran is helping to guide the Falcons to a potential district title.

With four games left – two against Northbrook and Spring Woods, who are each 0-3 in district play – Jersey Village is on track from its best season since a 9-2 campaign in 2018. The Falcons will have to get past Cy Creek (3-3, 2-1) and a potential de-facto district championship game against Stratford (6-0, 3-0) on October 30. With Tran at the helm and Arbrie Carter out wide (eight catches for 98 yards and two scores last week), anything is possible.

What to look forward to

Here are some of the games I’m looking forward to this week. Most teams have taken their bye week and we’re back to full slates. Games are getting more important than ever with district playoff races starting to take shape.

  • Conroe and Grand Oaks fight for playoff positioning (TH)
  • Deer Park and Dobie square off in a de-facto district championship game (TH)
  • Summer Creek looks to knock off North Shore after a strong showing last week (TH)
  • Klein looks to pick up an important win against Klein Forest (TH)
  • Madison looks to keep it rolling against Sharpstown (TH)
  • Alief Taylor looks to get back on track against Pearland (F)
  • Bridgeland takes on Cy Park in a battle of state-ranked teams (F)
  • Stratford looks to stay perfect against Memorial (F)
  • Morton Ranch fights for a spot in the playoffs against Tompkins (F)
  • Klein Collins battles Klein Cain as the top two teams in 15-6A
  • Tomball looks to get back on track at home against Klein Oak (F)
  • Willis looks to bounce back against a hot College Park squad (F)
  • Friendswood looks to keep momentum going against La Porte (F)
  • Foster looks to bounce back against Manvel (F)
  • The Magnolia Bowl between Mag and Mag West is ON! (F)
  • Montgomery faces a big district challenge against A&M Consolidated (F)
  • A solid Texas City defense faces an explosive Crosby offense (F)
  • Bay City takes on Columbia (F)
  • Stafford looks to bounce back against Needville (F)
  • Sealy and Bellville face off in the 4A-II game of the week (F)
  • Cy Woods looks to stay hot against Cy Ranch (SAT)
  • CE King tries its hand at an upset of Atascocita (SAT)
  • Clements battles Travis in a big district game (SAT)
  • Cinco Ranch looks to keep pace with a hot Katy offense (SAT)

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